Tips for Parents: Helping Your Child Practice Guitar at Home
Learning to play the guitar can be a fun and rewarding experience for children, but it requires regular practice.
As an expert guitar teacher with years of experience teaching children, I know that establishing a regular practice routine at home is crucial for your child’s progress.
In this article, I’ll share some tips on how to help your child establish a regular guitar practice routine at home.
The Importance of Practicing at Home
One of the most important things to remember is that what happens between lessons shapes your child’s progress.
Regular practice at home is crucial for developing their skills and building their confidence. When your child practices regularly, they’ll be able to master new techniques, learn new songs and make progress towards their goals.
It’s important to set fair expectations on what can be accomplished in a given time frame. Learning the guitar is a journey, and it takes time to master the skills needed to play well.
Encourage your child to focus on progress rather than perfection and celebrate each milestone along the way.
Who’s Responsible For Practice At Home
It’s essential to remember that as parents, you are responsible for ensuring that your child practices regularly at home.
Children can’t be trusted to do much of anything on their own, so why do we assume they know how to practice?
All the best child students I’ve ever had have had their parents actively involved in their practice. You need to be involved in your child’s guitar practice to help them stay motivated and make progress.
Tip 1 – Schedule Guitar Practice into the Timetable
One way to establish a regular guitar practice routine is to make it part of your child’s timetable.
Set the expectation that guitar time is a daily activity, just like brushing their teeth or doing homework.
Stick with it long enough to make it a habit.
It’s crucial to remember that building a habit takes time, so don’t expect your child to get it right from the start.
Forming A Habit Of Daily Guitar Practice
They say it takes 28 days to form a habit. For this reason, we recommend you encourage 5 minutes of practice time every day for the first 30 days of learning guitar.
This will allow your child to get into the habit of practising their guitar every day.
Once they are in the habit of playing the guitar every day, we can extend their practice to 10 minutes. You can extend their practice time by an extra 5 minutes every 2-4 weeks until they are doing the recommended 30m of daily practice.
How Many Minutes Per Day Should My Child Be Practicing Guitar?
In an ideal world, we would recommend that children between the ages 8 & 12 do 30 minutes of guitar every single day.
If your child is under the age of 7 then we want to aim for a maximum practice time of 15 minutes.
As mentioned previously start with 5 minutes a day and increase the duration of their practice time by 5 minutes every few weeks.
Only children who have professional ambitions or who have decided early on that guitar is their thing should practice for hours and hours every day… But if that’s the case they’ll be picking it up themselves with no encouragement from you.
Tip 2 – Sit With Them During Practice
All the best parents sit with their kids and supervise their guitar practice.
Remember, your kids don’t know much about guitar, aren’t very disciplined, and don’t know how to structure a practice routine. So give them guidelines and coach them through the process.
A good guitar teacher will make it easy for you by providing a practice plan and giving feedback on what they need to work on for that week.
If you can play guitar, join in, and make it a fun family activity.
If you can’t play guitar, consider taking 5-10 lessons so you know the basics. This way, you can provide better guidance and support to your child during practice.
Tip 3 – Play Games to Make it Fun
Guitar playing can be challenging in the beginning, so it’s not going to win over the iPad or PlayStation. However, you can make it more fun by including games in your practice sessions.
Ask your teacher for some examples of guitar games that you can play with your child. This way, you can make guitar practice a fun and enjoyable experience for your child.
You can also look into apps that gamify the learning process or incorporate watching videos of their favourite guitar players as a reward for a good practice session.
This will inspire them, and show them the benefits of hard work.
Check out some fun guitar games here
Committing to the Long Term
It’s essential to remember that learning the guitar takes time and is a long-term commitment (for both you and your child).
Having expectations that they are going to sound like the guitar player on recording after three months (or even three years) is completely unrealistic on your behalf.
Having the expectation that they are going to want to practice at home all the time is also unrealistic. Remember how much you fussed over things when you were a kid? How about going to sports training or the gym even as an adult?
Talk to your child about how long it actually takes to learn the guitar to a proficient level and try to get them to understand that they need to push through 2-3 years of not being great at it to get to the point where they are.
During this time they need as much encouragement as possible or at least be stalwart when they wish to quit.
Don’t Let Them Quit
Explain the importance of long-term commitment and remind them that guitar takes a lot longer to learn than most people anticipate.
Most importantly, don’t let them quit. No matter how much they winge, cry, complain, or frustrate you.
They only fail at guitar when you decide it’s time to give up.
Take Action Towards Establishing Their Guitar Practice Routine.
Establishing a regular guitar practice routine at home is crucial for your child’s progress.
As parents, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your child practices regularly and stays motivated.
Remember to schedule guitar practice into your child’s timetable, sit with them during practice, play games to make it fun, and commit to the long term.
About The Author – Kids Guitar Education Expert Michael Gumley
Meet Michael Gumley, a guitar teacher with over a decade of experience in teaching students of all ages and skill levels.
Michael’s love for the guitar began in 2005 when he first picked up the instrument. His passion for teaching led him to start his own guitar-teaching business in 2008.
Since then, he has taught over 1000 students and delivered more than 10,000 guitar lessons.
Michael holds a Bachelor of Music in Jazz and Contemporary and has released 5 albums, toured nationally and internationally twice, and authored 12 books on guitar playing and teaching.
He is also the creator of the Guitar Ninjas Curriculum, which is used in 20 studios around the world.
In addition to his successful career as a guitarist and author, Michael has made a significant impact on the guitar teaching industry.
He founded Melbourne Guitar Academy in 2015 and created the 6 Figure Guitar Teacher Program, a course that helps solo guitar teachers grow their studio to six-figure incomes.
Michael is also a board member for the Victorian Music Teachers Association and has travelled to Chicago to be a trainer at the Ultimate Creativity Week, a 6 day guitar-playing event.
Michael’s passion for teaching guitar has helped him create a fun and engaging learning environment for his students at his Melbourne Guitar Academy studio. He believes in tailoring lessons to each student’s individual needs and giving them what they need to reach their full potential.
If you’re looking for a qualified and experienced guitar teacher for your child, skip googling guitar teacher near me and reach out to Michael directly for the best guitar lessons in Melbourne.